When I think of the Far Cry series and what’s great about it, the natural experiences that take place due to random spawns and events are the first thing that come to mind. With Far Cry 5, you’re able to experience them often. However, Far Cry 5 is by no means perfect, and is let down by some significant problems with its narrative and optimisation.
Of course, there are its upsides. Like previous entries in the franchise, Hope County, Montana has been constructed beautifully. The developers have ensured that the world feels alive at all times, with its bustling wildlife, sprawling hills, and random events. There’s always something going on wherever you are.
Much of this can be credited to the wealth of side-content that’s available to players. As someone that wasn’t a fan of the main narrative (I’ll get into this soon), I was able to find more enjoyment out of locating stashes and saving civilians. Admittedly, the game can throw too much chaos at you at once sometimes, but it doesn’t hamper the fun that’s taking place. The fun can be taken one step further with the addition of a second player, who can now participate in main story missions as well as side-content unlike previous entries in the series. It should be noted that story progress in only saved on the host’s end, which is fair, but you’ll have to do missions twice over if you were planning on grabbing any achievements or trophies for the game.
Unfortunately, despite how the game was marketed, the overarching storyline in Far Cry 5 was not what I was hoping for. With all of the pre-release trailers and information, it looked like Far Cry 5 would provide a more interesting and topical plot than past games, yet that just doesn’t happen. It’s not just that however, the game is also held back by poor writing and many characters that either aren’t interesting or aren’t developed well enough to enjoy their presence in the game. The game does begin with a genuinely interesting opening 20 minutes that introduce us to the lead antagonist and some other critical characters, but it doesn’t hit the same height for the rest of the game. Joseph Seed and his captains, who appeared intimidating in the opening scenes of the game, are negatively affected by some awful, repetitive dialogue that players are forced to hear more than once, and there are some tiring gameplay segments that hinder it as well.
The game also has its fair share of glitches, although I have yet to be subjected to anything overly serious or game-breaking. I’ve seen enemies being launched into the air, and through geometry in chaotic situations, which are more humorous than problematic. However, there have been reports of significant audio issues, so be aware of that when considering your purchase.
On the multiplayer side of things, the Far Cry series has a reputation for providing an excellent editor tool for players to take advantage of and create their own maps and game-types. Far Cry 5 looks to continue this trend with the addition of Far Cry Arcade, and players are already beginning to come up with some great content. Ubisoft have provided players with a solid foundation to present their own ideas, which should allow for a strong community to be built around the game. As players uncover new secrets and come up with new concepts, alongside frequent content drops that are planned for the mode, I can foresee Arcade developing a strong fan base that’ll stick around for quite some time.
Overall, Far Cry 5 is an enjoyable game that’s bound to provide some fun for fans of the series as well as newcomers. It still possesses the chaotic fun that the series is known for, and Far Cry Arcade is a great evolution of its map creator and multiplayer component. However, despite some changes and additions in this entry, Far Cry 5 fails to propel the series forward in a meaningful way. Furthermore, the experience is also hampered by an uninteresting storyline and its underwhelming cast of characters. I purchased this game at full price, but I think it’s best to wait for it to drop in price unless you’re a hardcore fan of the series.